|Charles, the Director of Doodle.|
|Actresses on set.|
|Preparing a poster for the next scene.|
|Food always boosts morale.|
|Some of the crew behind the scenes.|
|It's a wrap.|
|The caravan departs.|
The silence in the house roars in my ears. There were more than 25 people here for the better part of the day; the cast of characters included actors, cinematographers, grips, a make-up artist, a set designer, a producer, a first assistant producer, producer’s assistants 2,3, and 4, the grip, the sound man, a still photographer, and the costume designer. There were technical assistants who were at their tasks as soon as their feet stepped out of the vans carrying them from Boston.
Directing this cast of characters? My seventeen year-old son, Charles. Clipboard in hand, he emerged from a car, ready to lead the charge. The transformation of my home into a movie set was complete in a matter of an hour. Many hands assembled one hundred thousand dollars worth of equipment that was begged, borrowed, rented and purchased. The center piece of the hardware was the RED 1, the same high-end cameral used to shoot such films as Pirates of the Caribbean and The Social Network.
Everyone was respectful, efficient and remarkably, egoless. It was all about making the best movie they could. I was honored to be allowed to watch the magic unfold....take after take after take. The patience and dedication of all those present was evident in ways both large and small. The producer drove two hours, unloaded a van and ensured that filming was underway. He got right back into his van and returned to Boston to pick up additional equipment that was necessary for the next shoot. To deliver the equipment to the film set, he had to turn around and drive back to western Massachusetts. At the eleventh hour, the producer and director shared the shock when rental arrangements fell through. To reserve another van was going to be significantly more costly. Without the van, it would be impossible to transport the crew. Charles, in a act that was reminiscent of The Gift of the Magi, sold his camera to raise funds to cover the added costs.
After ninety minutes of frenzied activity onset lights were rigged, lines rehearsed and the boom was raised. Offset, triangles of Nutella sandwiches and crackers and grapes were spread in a tempting display on the dining room table. A firm voice rang out, louder than all the others. For the first of fifteen or more takes today, I heard the words, “Quiet on set.”
Six hours later, the efficient machine was deconstructed. Within an hour, they were packed and gone. The house was eerily empty. Everything was slightly askew, but a concerted effort went into leaving the house the way they found it. The knife block was on the wrong side of the stove, the rug was still rolled, the kitchen lights were still taped up. However, there was remarkably little evidence that the crew had been here.
Alone in the house, I hear the echo of three words.... “Quiet on set.”